House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., said Tuesday evening it was a bad idea for President Trump to agree with Justice Department brass and let the agency inspector general take charge of reviewing key Russia-related documents.
In speaking with Fox News' Tucker Carlson," Nunes emphasized that he thinks Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who met with Trump about the matter and helped convince him to reverse course on a declassification order last month, should have nothing to do with the process.
"I don't think that was a good idea," Nunes said of Trump's reversal.
[Trump: Devin Nunes should receive the Medal of Honor]
Republicans, including Nunes, want to have the Russia-related documents declassified because they say the documents will show a tainted Russia investigation and bias in the top levels of the DOJ and FBI.
Among them are about 20 pages of the June 2017 application to the FISA court seeking the authority to spy on onetime Trump campaign aide Carter Page, who had suspicious ties to Russia. The FISA documents were released earlier in the summer, but in heavily redacted form.
Rosenstein signed off on an extension of that spy effort and is now the DOJ official overseeing special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia investigation.
"I don't think he should be in the decision-making process of whether or not the American people should see these or not," Nunes said of the documents.
Rosenstein was tentatively set to meet with GOP lawmakers last week to discuss reports that he considered secretly recording Trump. However, last week's meeting was postponed, and a House Judiciary Committee aide told the Washington Examiner at the time they are working to confirm a potential meeting.
Some Republicans were upset Rosenstein wouldn't be on Capitol Hill, calling for a subpoena, and Trump said he was "surprised" he wouldn't appear.